Fischer esterification is an important industrial method used to produce esters. It is convenient and easy to monitor. It uses H2SO4 as a catalyst, which is comparatively cheap and readily available. Also, as a dehydrating agent H2SO4 increases the yield of the reaction, and a separate dehydrating agent is not needed during the process.
This is the general equation of Fischer esterification.
In a reversible reaction, the yield can be increased by continuous removal of the product. During Fischer esterification, treatment of carboxylic acids with alcohols in the presence of sulphuric acid results in the removal of water, a byproduct. This maximizes the yield up to 70%.